Our Funny Little Valentine (Stories)

We have a backlog of stuff that we’re never going to get to, and what do you know, Life Intervenes(tm) with a vengeance.

But we had to share these stories. We’ll put up a “Quick Hits” item to clear out the list later…

REUNITED, WILL IT SOUND SO GOOD?: CBS Radio AC WDOK/102.1 “New 102” has found the man who will replace “Trapper Jack” Elliot, the 17-year morning drive fixture who was shown the We’re Not Renewing Your Contract Door along with 18-year “Infoman” Jim McIntyre last December.

And like the co-host he’ll join, “New 102” didn’t have to go far to find him.

Like Jen Toohey before him, Tim Richards has been a personality (middays) on sister hot AC WQAL/104.1 “Q104”. WDOK and WQAL used to share digs at One Radio Lane (RIP), but are now squeezed in with “brother” stations sports WKRK/92.3 “The Fan” and classic rock WNCX/98.5 at the Halle Building.

And now, Toohey and Richards will be in the same studio at “New 102” as “Jen and Tim in the Morning”.

The station publicity notes it’s a reunion for the pair, but it’s not just a radio reunion.

We don’t know if it was because the announcement was made on Valentine’s Day, but CBS Radio actually made a point of noting one personal fact about the new “New 102” morning duo:

Jen and Tim dated 7 years ago and are now back together as co hosts. “Tim and I have a past – and now we have a future,” states Toohey. “We’ve worked together for many years and have a mutual respect for each other’s broadcasting skills. I’m excited – this is going to be fun.”

As far as we know, that “future” will be strictly professional for “Jen and Tim”, and as far as we know, Toohey is still very much married to Nate Lyons, and has been since November 2010.

It’ll be interesting to hear the duo’s chemistry…on air chemistry, that is. We’ve heard Tim filling in on the show that he’s now officially co-hosting…

AND OFF-AIR CHEMISTRY: They don’t host a show together, but two Rubber City Radio Group programmers are going to share a life together.

That’s because on Valentine’s Day at the Akron Radio Center, Sue Wilson, country WQMX/94.9’s program director/morning show co-host, got an on-air marriage proposal from a man named Tim… rock WONE/97.5 program director Tim Daugherty.

Daugherty called into “Wynn and Wilson” as just a “first time caller, long-time listener” who wanted to ask a woman named Sue to be his valentine.

Wilson realized it was her boyfriend Tim on the phone, said yes to that question, and then…Daugherty popped an Even Bigger Question while walking into the WQMX studio, ring in hand…asking Sue to be his “next wife”.

She accepted, live on the air, which will put the programming reins of two of the four Rubber City Radio stations in the same family.

About that “next wife” line: As the company’s AkronNewsNow website reports, both Wilson and Daugherty are widowed.

As long-time OMW readers already know, Sue Wilson was married to former country WSLR/1350 afternoon drive host Phil Cordle, until he passed away after a battle with cancer.

We didn’t note it here when it happened, but Daugherty’s wife passed away as well from the same disease.

Sue Wilson’s “Voiceover” blog has a touching story about the pair walking for “Stewart’s Caring Place”, a support organization for individuals and families dealing with cancer, in 2011…in honor of Phil Cordle and Donna Daugherty.

Tim and Sue’s story is a love story you don’t even see in the movies, because it’s just too “perfect”…after all they’ve been through, Sue Wilson and Tim Daugherty found each other not just as colleagues, but as life partners…and we wish them a happy life together…


Jeff Kinzbach’s Radio Return

We have a whole stack of items we don’t have time – yet – to cover. Look for them in the next few days…we hope.

But for now, we can’t ignore the Radio Topic Elephant In The Room.

Jeff Kinzbach, with partner Ed “Flash” Ferenc, dominated Cleveland morning drive radio as “Jeff and Flash”, morning drive ringmasters as the “Buzzard Morning Zoo” on iconic rocker WMMS/100.7…until Howard Stern showed up in 1992 and took over top ratings from “Jeff and Flash” not long after.

Now, Kinzbach will try to compete for top ratings in morning drive radio again, but this time from an Akron perch.

Kinzbach is taking over the morning drive slot at Rubber City Radio Group Akron rocker WONE/97.5, starting on Monday.

The station already has a page for Kinzbach, quoting the host and his new immediate boss:

Jeff is very excited about joining WONE stating: “WONE is a great radio station. I’m excited to join the excellent staff and play the outstanding music that we all grew up with.”

Program Director Tim Daugherty is also excited to welcome Jeff to the staff. “I cut my teeth listening to him and I’m looking forward to the knowledge and energy this radio icon is bringing to WONE.”

And as noted, though Daugherty leaves his morning drive perch, he stays in his off-air management role…and will be heard on-air soon from 7 PM to midnight weeknights. The changes mean that former “Tim and Christi” morning drive co-host Christi Nichols and evening host Steve Hammond are out.

Kinzbach was heard on the air with Daugherty on Friday morning, and starts his own WONE morning drive show officially on Monday.

The Plain Dealer’s John Petkovic says Kinzbach came back to town seven years after leaving Cleveland, eight years after the end of “Jeff and Flash”:

Kinzbach left the station in 1994. He left Cleveland for Dallas in 2002.

“I bought an old ranch and fixed it up,” says Kinzbach. “I raised cattle, harvested and grew hay, the works.”

He moved back in 2009.

“My wife Patti and I were back for a trip and we just missed the area,” he says. “Sometimes you have to leave to appreciate the Midwest.”

Kinzbach has been out of full-time radio since coming back to Northeast Ohio, though he has been doing recent part-time fill-in work at CBS Radio classic rock WNCX/98.5.

Regular readers know that it’s not the first time the former Buzzard Morning Zoo-master has tried for a return to full-time radio in recent months, and not even his first try in the Akron market.

It didn’t at all go well the last time, when Kinzbach threw his hat into the ring for the Howie Chizek Replacement Sweepstakes.

Jeff was one of the auditioners for the Media-Com talk WNIR/100.1 “The Talk of Akron” midday opening…rather unfortunately a hole left behind by the death of 40 year station and talk radio icon Chizek.

Let’s go back to the thrilling days of, uh, mid-August of last year…where a certain media blog covered what did, and did not happen, at “The Talk of Akron”:

Judging from a Facebook status update later pulled by Kinzbach, the relationship between the radio station and the former WMMS host fell apart, and fast.

Kinzbach posted that he’d heard a station promo for his week-long audition stint had been pulled, and that “someone had been hired”.

After not hearing from WNIR officials, and playing some phone tag with the station, Kinzbach posted that he was eventually told that was indeed the case, and that he was told that “they have hired a guy who was a frequent caller to the station.”

That caller, of course, is the man now known as John “Couch Burner” Denning, the 20-plus year regular Chizek caller who took over the time slot once occupied by his favorite host, and who continues in the WNIR midday slot into 2013.

There’s not even a microscopic chance at West Market Street that a regular WONE caller/listener will show up between now and Monday to displace him, so it’s a much better situation for Kinzbach…in that, and many other ways.

For one, he’s not replacing a legend…as good as Daugherty is, it’s not he’s like taking over for the late Howie Chizek (and all the expectations that come with that). And of course, Daugherty stays at WONE both on the air and off, and is Kinzbach’s new immediate boss.

For another, WONE is a rock station, the format with which Kinzbach is most associated. And, WONE’s audience is not nearly as older skewing as the WNIR talk audience.

Finally, WONE’s signal is better than WNIR’s.

We’re not talking Cleveland ratings here (yet), but there are plenty of Summit County and Portage County folks who remember “Jeff and Flash” and still should be in WONE’s target demo range.

Though it’s not where WONE competes, we’ll be watching if the station gets a bump in the Cleveland ratings…the WONE signal is certainly good enough to reach a large chunk of the Cleveland market, though Rubber City Radio will certainly focus on the “home turf” in its efforts to market and promote the show.

WONE notes the hometown connection, reminding listeners that Kinzbach lives in the Akron area, and his wife Patti is “a native Akronite”…